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CSU volleyball doubleheader draws attention, scores

Collegian | Aria Paul
Team members of the Colorado State University Women’s Volleyball club embrace during a timeout Sept. 15. The Rams fell short of beating the Buffs, losing an early 2-0 lead and finishing with a loss of 2-3 at Moby Arena.

It was 7 p.m. Sept. 14, and the Colorado State Rams were preparing for their first game of a doubleheader against the Colorado Buffaloes. This series marked the beginning of a competitive weekend for CSU sports, with volleyball competing twice against CU and CSU football competing in the Rocky Mountain Showdown Saturday.

The Rams were coming off of a win against Pacific University in the Ram Volleyball Classic and had high expectations coming into this series. 


“We always want to win conference championships, that’s what we’ve done in this program for a long time.” -Emily Kohan, CSU volleyball head coach

The first point of the first set was awarded the Rams with a powerful kill from Malaya Jones. The set remained close, with the Rams consistently edging out the Buffaloes by only one or two points. However, it became evident that the Buffaloes had strength and were overpowering the Rams defense and were able to win 25-23.

The Rams were leading in nearly all statistics, proving yet again that they are a very technical team. With two points left in the second set, the Rams were pressing the Buffs hard to get the set victory but lost again 25-23.

The third set of the Boulder match started off strong, with the Rams having two strong kills from Naeemah Weathers and Jones. The Rams were able continue that momentum, and after trailing CU for several kills, CSU was able to recover and win the third set 25-21.

The fourth set began with a stellar block from Weathers, reinforcing her ability as an excellent player. After trailing the Buffs by several points, the Rams were able to regain a lead with a score of 10-6 and forced CU into a timeout.

It seemed that in the fourth set, the game was all about tied points. The set came down to the wire, with the Rams edging out the Buffs 26-24 and subsequently sending the rivals into the fifth and final set. The finale started off with a Rams lead and stayed that way for the majority of the set, with the Rams winning 15-13.

Following their away win, the Rams looked to continue that momentum at home in the next game of the tournament for the Golden Spike. Compared to the CU Events Center, the Moby Madness was palpable, and the student section was excited for an intense rivalry match.

“All eyes are on the state of Colorado this weekend,” head coach Emily Kohan said. “And I’m proud of our crowd for sticking around here tonight.”

The first set started off strong for the Rams, with a 6-0 lead that caused the Buffs to call the first timeout of the game. CSU ended the first set after a strenuous back-and-forth battle with strong recoveries from CU, winning 25-17. Emery Herman also hit 3,000 career assists, providing more momentum to the Rams.

“I don’t really care about numbers as much,” says Herman. “I think I just wanted to get in with this team and build those relationships and do what we know we can do with this team.”


The second set still consisted of a Rams lead; however, the scores were much closer, with the Buffs calling the first timeout at an 11-10 score. It was clear CSU had used their previous match against CU to analyze weaknesses in the Buffs defense, and the Rams won the second set 25-20.

Entering the third set, the Rams were using the energy at Moby and the exhaustion of the Buffaloes to attempt a three-set sweep. However, for the first time all match, the Rams trailed the Buffaloes 7-3 after a Rams timeout. Similar to CSU’s analysis of CU tactics, the Buffs responded in the third set and were leading the Rams 23-17.

The third set went to the Buffaloes with a score of 25-19, with Colorado having a higher hitting percentage of .483 than Colorado State’s .2.

The fourth set was similarly close to the previous set, but after trailing by several points, the Rams recovered and forced the Buffaloes into a timeout with a score favoring the Rams of 17-11. The set was competitive as ever, with the Rams trailing by five points but able to regain a tie at 22-22.

Tensions were high going into the last couple of points, and the Rams tried to secure the victory with several solid kills from Jones, leading both teams to be tied for match point at 24 each. However, the Buffaloes were able to edge out the Rams with a solid kill after pushing the game well past 25 points to a final score of 28-26.

The fifth set started out strong, but the Buffs were able to consistently edge out the Rams. It was looking to play out how the previous night’s match did, but this time with CU losing the first two sets to come back and win. Despite all last-ditch efforts, the Buffaloes out-played the Rams, winning the final set 15-13. In an exact replica of the previous nights victory, CU recovered well.

“We knew that it was a very, like, evenly distributed, hard-fought battle, and I think we saw that again tonight,” Kohan said. “It was a game of inches that just fell the wrong way for us.”

Reach Emma Askren at or on Twitter @emma_askren.

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Emma Askren
Emma Askren, Sports Editor
Emma Askren, alongside Damon Cook, is the fall 2023 sports editor for The Collegian. She began working at The Collegian during her first year in the fall of 2022, when she covered the swim and dive team as well as anything sports-related. She is currently a sophomore at Colorado State University, where she is majoring in journalism and media communication and double minoring in Spanish and sports management. During her first year, she joined the rowing team, began working as a reporter for The Collegian and working at the Student Recreation Center. Askren applied to CSU as a journalism major, knowing she wanted to combine her passion for sports and writing to create a fulfilling career. Upon realizing that Rocky Mountain Student Media was hiring for first-years, she jumped at the opportunity to become a writer for The Collegian. While working for the sports desk, Askren has had the opportunity to write about hockey, logging, whitewater rafting and the importance of women in sports. As a woman in a male-dominated industry, she seeks to break the status quo and become a successful sports journalist following graduation. Following a year as a sports reporter, Askren became a co-editor for the sports desk alongside Cook. Together the duo seeks to create a new and improved sports desk that caters to all readers of The Collegian and beyond.

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